Skip to content

Tag: Art

The Street Is An Art Gallery: Behind The Scenes With Sleep Is Famous

Posted in Austin, Creative Commons, and Journalism

Austin has many street artists, but few of them are as ubiquitous as “Sleep.”

Sleep, also known as Sleep is Famous, appears everywhere you look on our streets. His iconic image, an old-fashioned TV with rabbit-ear antenna and tiny stick figure feet, clings onto road signs, subverts fossil fuel advertising, and escapes from fires on Walmart emergency exits.

The artist behind Sleep is Famous remains mysterious and anonymous by choice, but he was willing to answer a few questions by email after I approached him about my Gonzo Giveaway. Sleep moved a few years ago from Seattle, where the very first Sleep TVs were doodles he created while he struggled in an artistic rut.

#Catscult Talks Stickers, Cats & Street Art: ‘It’s Cool To Be A Cat Person’

Posted in Austin, and Journalism

Are you part of The Cats Cult?

If you pay attention, and you know how to look, you can almost see their feline mind control rays washing over us, embedded in the WiFi signals. Every time your friend shows you an adorable cat .gif, the cult sinks its tendrils a little more into your consciousness.

I discovered The Cats Cult the way I discover many of my favorite artists — while on a long walk around Austin, a city that is highly decorated with graffiti, wheatpastes, murals, stickers and all forms of street art. The bright colors and psychedelic style attracted me to the image: an orange tom cat, third eye open, apparently wearing a red t-shirt and taking a selfie, all framed by a mystical triangle and the hashtag #catscult.

Creating An LGBTQIA Safe Space In Rural America

Posted in Journalism, and Yes! Magazine

In the heart of rural New England, two queer women built a space for art and community.

Amid the relatively conservative, rural surroundings of Manchester, New Hampshire, The Gal-lery is a sanctuary from judgment and oppression. Located deep inside the twisty hallways of a converted former mill, the space to showcase art isn’t marked by flashy signs or promoted with widespread advertising. It’s a place where LGBTQIA people, and others who are marginalized, can simply exist without having to justify their identities to others.

Catherine Graffam, an intersex, nonbinary transgender woman, cofounded The Gal-lery more than two years ago with Madeline Jones, a queer woman who also sometimes uses nonbinary pronouns, after the pair graduated from the New Hampshire Institute of Art. The two began hosting events in 2015 and have since built a successful community of regular visitors and friends. About 50 people attended the Nov. 3 opening of “Gals and Pals,” their first gallery show, which also featured nine visiting artists in addition to the works of Graffam and Jones.

Born To Fly: Extreme Action Heroes

Posted in Journalism, and SXSW

What comes to mind when you think of dancers? Elegant, graceful ballet? An experimental, intellectual modern dance routine? Swing and other forms of big band dance?

Then there’s the Streb Extreme Action Company, led by Elizabeth Streb, a uniquely talented and passionate choreographer. Using Streb’s “Pop Action Technique,” her “action heroes” defy death by climbing, spinning, dancing with swinging steel I-beams and hurling themselves through the air. Born To Fly, the new documentary from director/producer Catherine Gund, follows Streb and Company as they work toward their most audacious performance: a full day of events to celebrate the London Olympics that culminated with her dancers dangling hundreds of feet in the air from The London Eye.

The Streb heroes are passionate and, if not fearless, unafraid to look the potential consequences of their work in the face. All forms of professional-level dance are hard on the human body (dancers are famous for their feet, often damaged and ugly from repeated injury), yet we think of this art differently from other forms of human achievement. Elizabeth Streb repeatedly compares her work to boxing — when a boxer steps into the ring, it’s not about whether they’ll get hurt but how much. So it is with the Pop Action Technique, designed to prevent serious injuries and minimize others.